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Location in the state of South Carolina
South Carolina's location in the U.S.
923 sq mi (2,391 km²)
587 sq mi (1,520 km²)
336 sq mi (870 km²), 36.41%
276/sq mi (106.7/km²)
Beaufort County is one of the South's fastest-growing counties, primarily because of development south of the Broad River clustered along the U.S. Highway 278 corridor. The northern portions of the county have also grown steadily, due in part to the strong military presence around the city of Beaufort. As defined by the U.S. Census Bureau, the Hilton Head Island-Bluffton-Beaufort Metropolitan Statistical Area comprises Beaufort and Jasper counties. Beaufort County's population is over 70% urban.
The two portions of the county are physically connected via the Broad River Bridge, which carries South Carolina Highway 170. Despite the connectivity, oftentimes the "north of Broad" and "south of Broad" populations of the county find each other at odds over county-wide issues dealing with growth management.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau, the county has a total area of 923 square miles (2,390.6 km2), of which 587 square miles (1,520.3 km2) is land and 336 square miles (870.2 km2) (36.41%) is water.